• LED Maintenance ThoughtsYour Place:HOme - Light news
  • Auhtor:    Time:2/6/2015   Hits:589
  • There are numerous sign shops that look at "after-the-sale-service" as a true income stream for years to come. Naturally there are different mind sets about after-the-sale-service and there are dedicated "service" companies that only offer maintenance / service. I remember a visit I had with a sign group that is known for their spectacular signage and as I was introducing a new product that should reduce their service cycle, I was not sure how they might accept such a novel idea. I knew they offered twenty-four hour service on some of these huge displays and had a very heavy investment in maintenance people and equipment.

    So I broached the subject right up front and I was amazed of the response I received. I know what I wanted to hear, but when I heard it I was still surprised. The man in charge was very professional and responded as any business manager should: "If I can change to a product that costs me less to service I am eliminating some of the liability that is a burden of my overhead, so naturally I am interested, for my customers first, and for my company second!"

    So, back to the point of service as related to LED. If you offer "service" contracts for XX months on any given sign, to offer LED does not need to eliminate your maintenance stream. If anything it opens up a new business model that should make your customer happy and keep you in the service business.

    Most all LED vendors today offer from three to five-year warranties on the product(s). Power Supply warranties vary from traditional one-year to five-year warranties. So let's turn this into a consistent income stream that hopefully keeps the end user happy and you with controlled liabilities.

    It is important to remember the value of a warranty is to not have to use it and to remember you as the sign manufacturer and the end user, have expectations. My recommendation goes back to the old AS&I days where 97% of their business was leases and they knew to have a successful lease on a mechanical part also required a maintenance contract. Thus the lease technically included maintenance and it was calculated into the total lease number. The end user paid one total "lease" number and was covered totally.

    However, something not originally considered as the company only used the very best parts to cut down on future maintenance needs, was the customer's position. The customer knew he was paying a portion of the monthly lease for "service." However, when he never saw a service person or never even needed to call one, he then questioned why he was paying for something that he saw no direct benefit from. In reality there was a very real benefit in that the signs worked, and worked, and needed very little site service.

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